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Ashutosh keeping up his reputation

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Friday, March 17, 2006

Ashutosh will also touch upon how Jodhabhai became the head queen (among many wives of Akbar) after their marriage. At the same time, the film will also dwell upon Akbar's secular outlook and his sense of diplomacy. Despite not being able to read and write due to spending several initial years of his life in Afghanistan due to his father Humayun being driven into exile, Akbar maintained an extensive library and had books read out to him. All this knowledge helped him acquire wisdom and develop a secular outlook.

Trade sources said in an effort to converse himself with every possible detail and ensure historical accuracy for his period film, Ashutosh is conducting extensive research for the period venture.The task is by no means easy, trade sources said, considering that the romance between Akbar and Jodhabai is a subject that history books have left largely untouched.

Although much is written about Akbar the Great, very less has been written about Jodhabhai in official text books, giving way to controversies.According to the official history text books, Akbar's marriage to Jodhabai was part of the Mughal emperor's strategy to forge alliances with Rajput princes through diplomacy rather than military conflicts.During the course of his research for the film, Ashutosh has read Akbarnama, a biographical account of Akbar written by Abul Fazl - one of the Navaratans of Akbar's royal court and Ain-e-Akbari, a translation of Abul Fazal's Persian text. He has also consulted historians such as Irfan Habib of Aligarh Muslim University.

In his quest for historical authenticity, Ashutosh has consulted professors of Jamia Millia Islamia and the direct descendents of Jodhabai. The film, which is being produced as well as directed by Ashutosh will have music by maestro A R Rehman while the lyrics will be penned by Javed Akhtar


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